In-Line Water Change Valve - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-01-2015, 04:39 AM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up In-Line Water Change Valve

Okay so first I wanted to use an Ecoplus 396 pump with a gravel vac but that did not work because the line needs to be primed, so I came up with this I am yet to try.

I decided to try and use my canister pump to remove waste water during water changes even though it is a cheap SUNSUN HW-603B, I did not want to use a T with ball valve because that creates resistance (although if I used the pass through side for regular operation that probably would have been the way to go) so I started with a garden hose Y splitter that had ball valves built in already. I will end up replumbing this with a T, but anyway I needed a lot of interchangers between straight garden hose thread with washers and tapered pipe thread with thread tape.




Cansiter filter > Cerges reactor > UV > water change valve > back to tank ... like I said I will do this again with a T on Monday, but this way I can open the water change valve and close the valve going back to the tank which will pump my waste water to my Aqueon valve at the sink. Then to refill I power off my pump, close the blue valve and open the return valve going to the tank.



I will improve on this and shorten the length!
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-02-2015, 01:40 PM
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I can't see the pics for some reason, but I am doing pretty much the same thing...

My plan is a pvc T and ball valve on the intake side and drain by siphon. As long as the T is below the tank you should just need to open it and the siphon will flow. If I get time to get the parts tonight I will take a pic, but for me its pretty much going to be a T with 2 1/2" hose barbs going straight through and the "T" will have the ball valve and the 3rd 1/2" barb connector. As long as you do not let the water go below the intake your hoses should not need to be primed again after.

I also am planning a fill system through the spray-bar, but that is a little more complex being the sink is in basement and tank right above, all planned out just a lot more parts. Thought about automating it all but I need to treat water, guess I could get a dosing pump to dose prime into the line, but that is getting way off topic.

You should attach the pics to the post, seems your bandwidth is maxed out that is why the pics do not show.
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Last edited by Darkblade48; 11-03-2015 at 06:53 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-03-2015, 03:23 AM Thread Starter
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I know, they are larger if I host them give it 24 hours they will show my bandwidth resets at midnight...
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-03-2015, 09:12 PM
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I personally do not like the Y splitter, that seems like it would cause flow issues, besides that your's is pretty close to what I am going to be doing.

I did talk to my cousin last night who knows a lot more about plumbing than I do and he gave me some ideas. Was talking about a 12v solenoid on the return line for filling with a float sensor to tell it when to stop. Now I am trying to think of how to Auto-Dose Prime when filling with that water so I can also use as auto top-off.

Then we got into RaspberryPI as a driver for the system to automate my Saturday 60% water change. Getting out of my budget but may redesign everything from the start to prep for that later.

Not trying to derail your post, just giving you ideas in case your pockets are deeper than mine.

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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-04-2015, 02:45 AM
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I think what you are doing will work fine. I do much the same but with a Tee and two ball valves. You can also throttle flow if you ever have a filter that's otherwise a bit too large.

Here are some photos: https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/12...ml#post7208546

Those valves are from Three Little Fishes and I like them a lot, not very expensive and very well built. These are on the 5/8" tubing with the big sunsun's, but they have valves in various size.

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 05:09 PM Thread Starter
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The Y was to prevent flow restrictions using a T but I have now solved this. I have thought about auto water changes with a float switch and solenoid before, moreless as a safety measure when using a single canister on multiple tanks to shutdown the canister if an intake gets clogged in one of the tanks.

I like those TLF valves you have, I just did the same thing basically only hard plumbed; the pass-through is used for normal operation and the grey valve on a 90 degree is for water changes.




My system is getting a bit long and I have not added the heater yet, so I am not sure what I am going to do. It would help to be able to use a 90 degree barbed nipple on the end but then that defeats the purpose of using a pass-through T design. I may cut off a few barbs and just heat the tube up so it has a tight bend to the right after it exits the left of the system then put the heater after the bend on the way back up to the tank:



I do have the same style setup for changing my water in the basement using a garden hose to run from the water source to my tanks it primes the line going to the tank I am working on and then allows me to open a siphon valve to drain/vac the tanks using gravity:

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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 05:27 PM
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Ah I need a better way to start my siphons. I just leave them all full right now which is fine until I lose one. Then I have to suck the water back over the lip of the tank.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 05:38 PM Thread Starter
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I not only use it to prime the line I also use it to send the right temperature water to the tanks using this Aqueon with a garden thread adapter:
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 05:38 PM
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I think you're worrying too much with these relatively large valves whether a Tee vs Y causes loss of flow. I realize there is a theoretical loss, but I have a T on one of my canisters and an identical one in the same tank without, both on the same size spray bar. The water disturbance at the top looks identical.

The reality is that flow velocity in these hoses is pretty darn slow and elbows and such have less impact than you might think.

Siphons: Take a small pond pump and stick it into the tank and blow water into the intake you are trying to start a siphon for (taking care not to spray up in your face!). Usually even if they don't mate up perfectly you can get enough pressure to get it over the hump.

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 05:44 PM Thread Starter
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The problem is I have so much else going on in the line of flow I need to reduce any resistance I can.

The canister line always stays primed so that is why I tapped into that; no need to be dropping pumps into the tank and dripping water all over the glass pulling it out afterwards leaving hard water stains all over the outside.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 05:57 PM
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There are 8 tanks in the basement that are plumbed to the drain for water changes. I only really need to restart a siphon if I take things apart or if I lower the water level too far. Still it is hard to get at the pipes. What I really need is a plumber to run some water lines down there. Right now I run a hose from the first floor bathroom.
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 06:12 PM Thread Starter
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Oh I see, your saying each tank has its own designated line that stays primed! I only have 1 line I use as a vac for all the tanks in the rack:
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-05-2015, 06:41 PM
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Yes it is kind of a lot of pipes but it does the job. I don't combine vacuuming and water changes. I just do all the water changes on one day. If I want to clean a tank that is a separate issue for me. Honestly I only do that about once every 6 months or so. Each tank has a permanent pcv overflow except that to minimize pipes I just run the pipe straight down into the tank. Doesn't look all that great but I hide most of it behind some plants.

Two of the tanks have the siphon connected to the filters and just use ts with ball valves. Those restart themselves.
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-07-2015, 11:52 PM Thread Starter
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I may end up going back to my Y setup because the angles work better, you will see why if I do so.



Also I am not sure my canister pump will push water during water changes far enough (25-30 feet) the pump is a JP-450G @ 400L/h
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 11-17-2015, 07:25 AM
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it's not the distance you should be worried about, it's the height.
however, why didn't you install the valve on the "dirty" side of the system?

you want to take out the "dirty" water during a change and when you fill the system back up with "clean" water it will pass the heater if the water isn't sufficiently heated before it enters the system.
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